Industrybuilding safety
FounderWalter Kidde
ProductsSmoke and carbon monoxide alarms, fire extinguishers
ParentUnited Technologies (2005-2020)
Carrier Global (2020-present)

Kidde (/ˈkɪdə/[1]) is a brand and division of Carrier Global. It is a group of businesses that manufactures and distributes fire detection and suppression equipment, as well as smoke and CO alarm units. Kidde is one of America's largest manufacturer of smoke alarms[2][3] and fire safety products.[4] Kidde Fire Safety North America is headquartered in Mebane, NC.[2]


The company was founded by Walter Kidde in 1917 in the United States.[5] The founder was of Czech ancestry, and unrelated to the Danish author Harald Kidde.


Walter Kidde founded Kidde Inc. in 1917 with $300 he had in savings. In 1918 the company, then known as Walter Kidde & Company, purchased the rights to the "Rich" system; a way to detect fires on board ships.[6]


In 1923, Kidde purchased the patent rights for a siphon device that allowed quick release of carbon dioxide, improving the function of fire extinguishers. In 1924, the company produced the first portable carbon dioxide fire extinguisher and in 1925 it installed the first built in industrial fire extinguishing system. In 1926, Walter Kidde & Company partnered with the Navy to design a system to protect airplane engines against fires.[6]


The company established a British operation at Northolt in 1935 as its first overseas operation.[5] The company further expanded to Africa, Asia, Europe and South America.[7]


When Walter Kidde died in 1943, his son John took control of the company. At that time, the company employed over 5,000 people, and was producing over $60 million of war supplies.[6][7]


At the end of WWII the company saw a significant drop in sales. In the 1950s, the company diversified into machinery and tool manufacturing, siphon devices for consumer and medical uses, and aircraft accessories.[6]


Robert L. Dickinson was named president of the company in 1961. In January 1964, Fred Sullivan, officer and director of the Litton Industries, succeeded Dickinson as president and later succeeded John Kidde as chairman. From 1964 to 1968, Kidde grew from $40 million in annual revenues to $400 million. In 1966, Kidde was named to the Fortune 500 list at position 283. In 1968 the company was incorporated as Kidde & Company, Inc.[6]


In May 1987, John Kidde died.[8] In August 1987, Kidde was purchased for $1.7 billion by August Hanson Industries, the United States arm of Hanson Trust of the United Kingdom.[9] In August 1988, Hanson sold most of the Kidde fire protection business to Pilgrim House Group, a firm based in the United Kingdom involved in electrical products and fire protection.

Included in the sale were Walter Kidde North America Group, Fenwal Inc., and Kidde's Fire Protection Group Europe. During the Kidde acquisition process Pilgrim House was purchased by Williams Holdings plc, an industrial management firm.[10] In 1989, it merged with Graviner (another Williams Holdings business) to form Kidde Graviner.[5]


In 1990, subsidiary Walter Kidde Aerospace Inc. opened a Production and Technology Center, for $4 million. By that time, Kidde products were found in aircraft such as the B-2 Stealth Bomber and 747-400 airliners.[10] In 1993, it acquired Dunford Hepburn.[5] In February 1997, Williams Holdings purchased Chubb Security plc.[11]


In March 2000, Williams announced the breakup of the company.[5] Now an independent entity, the firm adopted the name Kidde plc in September 2000. In October 2000, Kidde announced it was going to demerge from Chubb plc.[12] Kidde plc listed on the London Stock Exchange in November of that year.[9][13]

In December 2004, Financial Times reported Kidde as "the market leader in residential fire protection in the United States."[14] In April 2005, United Technologies Corporation finalized its acquisition of Kidde and place the company under its new Fire & Security brand. The move re joined it to its former sister company Chubb Security, and several other brands to create UTC Fire & Security.[15][16] In 2009, Kidde Acquired the company FireX, which was owned by Invensys Controls.[17]


In April 2013, Kidde expanded its Worry-Free product line to include UL-listed carbon monoxide (CO) alarms.[18] In November 2017, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a recall notice for 134 models of Kidde fire extinguishers citing failures to discharge correctly when used.[19] As many as 37.8 million extinguishers could be covered by the recall notice.[20] Not too long later in March 2018, Kidde recalled their 2 Dual-Sensor Smoke Detector models, PI9010 and the PI2010.[21] The reason for the recall was a yellow cap left on one of the sensors that could fail to alert buyers of the alarm of a possible fire. 452,000 units in the USA and about 40,000 units in Canada were affected in the recall. The recall affected units of the 2 models manufactured from September 2016, through January 2018. No injuries or accidents were reported because of the yellow cap before the recall.

In May 2021, Kidde announced a recall of their TruSense line of alarms due to the alarms not detecting smoke until fatal levels.[22]


Kidde is headquartered in Mebane, North Carolina. Kidde Canada (formerly Pyrene Company or Chubb Security) operates under Kidde Fire Safety North America and is located in Toronto, Ontario.[23] The Kidde Fenwal Controls division is located in Ashland, Massachusetts.[24] Kidde Aerospace is located in Wilson, North Carolina.[25]

Awards and recognition

In September 2017, Kidde was ranked among the top manufacturers of carbon monoxide alarms.[26][27] Kidde's fire blanket was also ranked a "top player" in the industry by the Global Fire Blanket Market.[28] Kidde carbon monoxide alarms are included in the "Carbon Monoxide Alarms industry" report of 2017 to 2022.[29]


  1. ^ "Americans Neglect Simple Measures to Ensure Fire Preparedness". Kidde. 18 November 2009. Retrieved 6 March 2016.
  2. ^ a b "Kidde Donates Smoke Detectors for NC 'Operation Save a Life'". Firehouse. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  3. ^ "Global Smoke Alarm (Smoke Detector) Market 2017: Kidde, Honeywell Se". The Real Fact 24. 27 September 2017. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  4. ^ "Long Island McDonald's, Nassau and Suffolk County Fire Marshals and Ronald McDonald Team Up for the 31st Annual Fire Safety Program Launch". Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  5. ^ a b c d e "Preventing Fire with Technology". UTC Fire & Security. Retrieved 24 September 2017.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Kidde, Inc. - Dictionary definition of Kidde, Inc. | FREE online dictionary". Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  8. ^ New York Times,"J.F. Kidde,Ex-Head of Diversified Concern"
  9. ^ a b "KIDDE, INC. - Company Profile, Information, Business Description, History, Background Information on KIDDE, INC". Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  10. ^ a b "Kidde plc - Company Profile, Information, Business Description, History, Background Information on Kidde plc". Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  11. ^ "Chubb History". Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  12. ^ Hailstone, Laura (31 October 2000). "Mergers". Flight International: 2001.
  13. ^ Goff, Sharlene (2004). "Kidde accepts revised UTC offer". Financial Times. 1.
  14. ^ Roberts, Dan; Urquhart, Lisa (2004). "United Technologies to pursue bid for Kidde". Financial Times. 1.
  15. ^ "UTC agrees to buy Kidde for $2.8bn"[dead link]. The Washington Post, 16 December 2004.
  16. ^ Daniels, R. (2005). "Kidde buy a done deal for UTC". Security Systems News. 8 (5): 21–22.
  17. ^ "Firex Documents".
  18. ^ "Kidde Extends Worry-Free Line to Detect UL-Listed Carbon Monoxide". Entertainment Close-up. 15 April 2013.
  19. ^ "Kidde Recalls Fire Extinguishers with Plastic Handles Due to Failure to Discharge and Nozzle Detachment: One Death Reported -". November 2017.
  20. ^ "Massive government recall covers 37.8 million Kidde fire extinguishers".
  21. ^ "Kidde Recalls Dual Sensor Smoke Alarms Due to Risk of Failure to Alert Consumers to a Fire". 20 March 2018.
  22. ^ "Kidde Recalls TruSense Smoke and Combination Smoke/Carbon Monoxide Alarms Due to Risk of Failure to Alert Consumers to a Fire". 6 May 2021.
  23. ^ "Kidde Canada - Smoke Alarms, Carbon Monoxide Alarms, Fire Extinguishers". Kidde Fire Safety. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  24. ^ "Kidde-Fenwal Inc". Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  25. ^ "Pages - Home". Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  26. ^ "Global Carbon Monoxide Alarms Market Analysis 2011-2017 and Forecast 2018-2023 | Home". Retrieved 14 November 2017.
  27. ^ "Carbon Monoxide Alarms Market 2017 – Kidde, Gentex, Empaer, BRK Brands, New-Force, Honeywell – First News Service". Retrieved 14 November 2017.
  28. ^ "Global Fire Blanket Market Top Players 2017 – Tyco International, Kidde Safety – Talk Daily News". Retrieved 14 November 2017.
  29. ^ Cruz, Daniel (5 October 2017). "Global Carbon Monoxide Alarms Market 2017-2022: Kidde, BRK Brands, Nest Labs, FireAngel and Honeywell". Talk Herald. Retrieved 14 November 2017.

External links

  • Kidde Group Global portal
  • Kidde Brasil
  • Kidde Fire Protection
  • Kidde-Fenwal
  • Kidde Poland
  • Kidde-Czech
  • Kidde Fire Safety Europe
  • Kidde Fire Trainers